Right wing protesters(l), Down websites(r)

Bgrocker/Shutterstock DC_Draino/Twitter (Licensed)

‘Practice run for November?’ Massive Facebook outage on Super Tuesday sparks claims of deep state sabotage

'What a coincidence that Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube are down on Super Tuesday.'


Mikael Thalen


Posted on Mar 5, 2024

Outages on numerous social media platforms have led to conspiracy theories online regarding internet access and elections.

After services such as Facebook, Instagram, Threads, and Messenger became unavailable on Tuesday, far-right users began suggesting that the outages were linked to the multiple primaries today across the country known as Super Tuesday.

Popular conspiracy theorists such as DC_Draino insinuated not only that the outages were nefarious but that it may signal plans to shut down the internet during the 2024 presidential election.

“What a coincidence that Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube are down on Super Tuesday,” he wrote. “Practice run for November?”

Despite DC_Draino’s claim, the outage appears to only be affecting apps run by Meta.

YouTube, which is owned by Google, was unaffected.

The outages even led Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton to insinuate a connection between the technical issue and the day’s elections.

“National outage of Facebook and Instagram on this Super Tuesday,” he said.

The claim quickly picked up steam and led to numerous trending hashtags on X, including #CyberAttack and #FacebookDown.

“Is it weird that Facebook and IG go down on Super Tuesday?” the user Being Libertarian asked.

While the conspiracies burbled online, no one could explain why the deep state, if they wanted to take down the internet before the 2024 election in November, would give everyone a chance to experience and practice working around an outage.

Andy Stone, Meta’s communications director, confirmed in a post on X that the company was aware of the issue but did not provide further details.

“We’re aware people are having trouble accessing our services,” Stone said. “We are working on this now.”

Some users on the platform attempted to convince others to express caution and patience during the outage.

“Facebook and Instagram both down on Super Tuesday? Everyone stay calm and remember that coincidence usually explains things without the need for conspiracy,” one user said.

Yet given the lack of information, conspiracy theorists were quick to fill the void.

Some left-wing users expressed skepticism as well by suggesting that such an outage could only benefit former President Donald Trump. Others argued that a foreign government could be to blame.

“Today is Super Tuesday,” anti-Trump commentator Seth Abramson said in a since-deleted tweet that he later claimed was a joke. “Which automatically makes what’s happening right now—to Trump’s apparent political benefit—feel suspicious as Hell, whether or not it should. I guess we’ll find out the full story eventually… probably after the polls close.”

Given that the story is developing, it still remains unclear what caused the outage. No evidence has indicated that the issue thus far is related to a cyberattack or a conspiratorial effort to interfere in the day’s elections.

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*First Published: Mar 5, 2024, 11:32 am CST